Inspired by Shiroimono's fic. I don't necessarily see Christine as gay personally but I could see it screwing up the love triangle delightfully. Un-beta'd and crapped out in an hour. PM me and tell me if you spot editing errors. Or just tell me I'm funny. Or pretty.

Holding gently onto her soft hand, his eyes bore into hers with the gentle sincerity of a deer. Or some equally sweet but nevertheless oblivious animal.

"Christine. My sweet lovely Christine. Please tell me you feel the same! My heart yearns to know if our childhood love has blossomed on both sides." He said, trying to rouse as much passion as a man who had never gotten more excited than when there was Brown Sugar available for his breakfast possibly could.

Sitting down gently on her dressing room chair Christine mulled over her options carefully. She enjoyed his company very much, and it was a pleasure to have him drop by the Opera house on occasion. Truly it was becoming a bit bothersome during rehearsal, but she had so few friends to begin with. Much less ones that reminded her of her dear Papa and could reminisce with her. There was truly no gentle way to say certain things to her beloved chilhood friend, who perhaps had gotten the wrong impression during certain songs and a few friendly lunches.

"Raoul…."She began tentatively

"Yes my Songbird of the stage?" He cast his eyes adoring up at her, hair flopping into his eyes like an overeager puppy waiting to be told it could jump onto her lap.

She cringed "Lets...not call me that first off." her smile looked pained enough that Raoul wondered if perhaps he should look into a chirurgeon for her. "Secondly my dear friend, I'm so sorry but I don't feel that way for you. You will always be close to my heart but-".

"I can try harder! More flowers! Or perhaps poetry? I have several half finished!" straightening himself off the floor and dusted off breeches before spouting "There once was a Singer from Nantucket..."

Stopping him before he got any further she debated advising him against having Phillip assist him in any other poetic endeavors but suspected they were already getting off topic enough as it was.

"No Raoul! It's starting to look like a florist shop in here and I fear I'm starting to develop allergies. Also my dressing room is getting ants from all the sweets. No." She debated her next course of action and gentled her tone. "Sometimes Raoul, there is a certain kind of girl. A girl who doesn't ever have an interest in boys or men, who have a different idea of what life should hold for them..."

With a patronizing wave of his hand he silenced her. "I know I know. You're destined to be a singer. You could still do that as my wife! We could hold small concerts in the home. You could be the talk of Paris. I would never keep you from your music. We would entertain whenever you wished!"

Feeling the urge to strangle something she paused trying to think of yet another way of bringing her point across. She thouhgt back and then brightened. "Raoul. Do you recall the lunch we had last week at Le Chatrelle? Do you remember the woman who walked in? Long black hair, rosebud lips, skin like moonglow. All the men stared at how beautiful she was? Well….I found her beautiful too.." She trailed off with a blush looking at her hands. There was a long pause as Raoul pondered this statement with all the focus he could muster. In truth the last time he had this expression on his face his tutor had tried introducing him to maths beyond basic addition and subtraction. The day ended with the Tutor in tears, sobbing onto a bust of Pythagoras and vowing to never again teach aristocracy. Raoul got to get an iced treat and play croquet in the garden. His head had hurt from all those numbers.

Finally his face cleared and with a smile like a man who has found the answer to what pants would go best with a particularly troublesome shade of peach cravat, he grasped her hand once more. "Christine" He cooed, dovelike "My Angel of Acting." he dove past her obvious lemon faced dislike, "Never will you need to worry. My heart is only yours! No matter the beauty of other women it is YOU that I will hold above all. You have no need to feel threatened by the loveliness of others. You are like..." He stumbled here trying to thin of the prettiest things he knew "The moon! And the stars! And...erm, fresh desserts from cook! Never will you feel the need to compare yourself to others. My eyes and heart shall ne'er stray!" He nodded his head triumphantly. Certain at last he had come to the crux of a confusing issue.

"I will never marry a man!" Christine blurted out. All patience gone. She was beginning to think back, wondering precisely how long her friend had been under the water rescuing that scarf. This was getting to become painful as conversations went.

"Ahhh..." He ahhed wisely. Stroking his chin where he truly hoped a beard would come in one of these days. "You are married to the stage." He looked off into the distance in what he hoped was a very worldly way. "But can you not be married to me too? Truly all I would require for you I to keep house, bear my children and attend parties as a Viscountess. Perhaps we could do both?" His eyes held hers with all the warmth of the Opera's stage horse after it would shit on the stage during rehearsel.

"I like women!" She shrieked at him.

He nodded agreement.

"Yes! Aren't they nice?" As Viscountess she would have many new female friends. It was good.

Her head started to pound.

"I will not and cannot love you that way...I'm sorry" She tried. She really had.

Confusion and sadness started to fill his eyes
"I...I don't understand. I did everything right. Flowers."

They made her sneeze in large quantities

"Chocolate."

The ballerinas refused to eat them due to their figure. They were attracting ants.

"Poetry."

She was going to kill Phillip next time she saw him.

He was counting on his fingers as he was wont to do on serious problems. Suddenly his head jerked up. Looking at her in suprise and a kind of hurt wonderment he spoke slowly.

"Are you trying to tell me…..." His eyes squinted at her in beffudlement

She started nodding her head vigourously in relief.

"THERE'S SOMEONE ELSE!?"

Her head hit the desk of her overly flowered dressing room table with a dramatic thunk worthy of any Opera star before her. Waving her arm about languidly in affirmation she gave up.

"Oh yes. Sure. Mmm hmm. Madly in love. Heart torn in two. Agony. A guy, quite "

His hand clutched his chest dramatically. "Christine! "He began after striking the most dramatic pose he could think of. If anyone asked he would deny vehemently that it came out of his favorite Pirate picture book he had since he was a child. "I swear by the stars above," a quick look above revealed only a cracked ceiling and perhaps a drip that should be seen to, "That I shall never rest till I find who has stolen your affections and win you back from them!". With that he grabbed his coat from the rack by the exit and swirled off in what he hoped was a very impressive manner. It probably would have been more so if it hadn't gotten caught on a spare nail the stage crew had left of leaving him exiting on the note of a rather large ripping sound.

With a sigh Christine leaned back in her chair. Social interactions with that boy were becoming more difficult every day. Also something must be done about those dratted ants…

With a gust of wind the lamp that had lit her dressing room went out in a huff, leaving only sudden darkness. A voice swam through the room like a winding snake into her ear.

"Christine. My lovely. Your Erik is here to return the love you so ardently declare before that foolish boy! Yes! He knows now that your shyness has only been out of fear of unreturned love ..." The voice continued on like this punctuated by the loud regular thunk of Christine's forehead loudly finding her table again and again in the dark.